*Exegesis of Luke 4:16-30*
Word Count: 2738 (excluding scripture 435)
*Master of Arts*
*Luke – Acts: A Pentecostal Reading*
Lecturer: Dr David Parker
Southern Cross College
Chester Hill Campus – Distance Education
Date Due: 8th May 2009
Handed in: XXXXXXXXX
Declaration of Authorship
I hereby declare that this submission is my own work and that, to be best of my knowledge and belief, it contains no material previously published or written by another person nor material which to a substantial extent has been accepted for the award of any other degree or diploma of a university or other institution of higher learning, except where due acknowledgement is made in the acknowledgements.
\\ Signed: John Shadlow Date: XXXXXXXX
\\ * *
Table of Contents
Authorship and Date. 3
Occasion and Purpose. 4
Exegesis: Luke 4:16-30 – Rejection at Nazareth.
Setting of the Reading (4:16-17) 7
Cycle 1: Scripture Reading (4:18-19) 8
Cycle 1: Interpretation (4:20-21) 11
Cycle 1 Response: Initial Question from Crowd (4:22) 11
Cycle 2: Proverb and Historical Setting of Their Rejection (4:23-27) 12
Cycle 2 Response: Crowd’s Anger (4:28-29) 13
Jesus’ Departure (4:30) 13
To the Original Recipients.
To Us. 14
Luke 4:16-30 is a pivotal passage in the context of Luke’s Greek historiography.
Jesus has been baptised and anointed by the Holy Spirit (3:22) and empowered by the Holy Spirit (4:14) and now Jesus comes to His programmatic inaugural address in Luke 4:16-30.
Jesus declares that the new Messianic age has arrived bringing with it the ultimate “Jubilee” and with it the “release” from sin and bondage.
However, Jesus also declared that this release was not just for Israel but all humanity and all classes of person including the widows, the unclean and the foreigners.
This was too much for the people to tolerate; it did not fit with their concept of Messiah.
The people reject both Jesus and His message declaring Him a false prophet and worthy of death.
Jesus also rejects the Nazarenes and never returns.
This cycle of declaration and rejection would be played out again and again as Jesus enters Jerusalem and as the Apostles declare the Gospel in Acts.
Ultimately the promise to “/Abraham and his seed/” would be accepted by the Gentiles to the point where by the end of Acts the church is a Gentile church and totally separate from the synagogues.
The choice is ever before us to accept or reject the message of Jesus; as the Nazarenes discovered there is no middle ground.
In the exegesis of Luke 4:16-30 the main theme is the first major speech by Jesus’ setting out His program of teaching and Messianic claims.
The passage also portrays the role of Jesus in God’s plan.
!! Authorship and Date
There is no indication in the text of either Luke as to who was the author; however, this does not mean that the work was anonymous.
The work is dedicated to Theophilus (Luke 1:3) and he would no doubt be aware of the author.
The oldest extant copy of the Gospel that is dated between 175 – 225C.E.
contains the title “Gospel according to Luke” which is found at the end of the text.
The second most ancient witness supporting the Lucan authorship is the Muratorian Canon that is dated 170 – 180C.E. We cannot say with absolute certainly that Luke is the author; equally there are no definitive arguments against the Lucan authorship.
In this situation we should assume that the traditions and memories of the early church that go back to the first readers of the Gospel are correct in stating the Luke is the author.
Luke’s Gospel is unique in two ways.
Firstly, it is the longest Gospel.
In /Novum// //Testamentum Graece//,**/ Luke occupies 96 pages while Matthew, Mark and John occupy 87, 60 and 73 pages respectively.
Secondly, it is the only Gospel with a sequel (Acts).
The two volumes not only allow Luke to introduce Jesus but also details how His ministry relates to the early church era.
Luke is the only Gospel author to link the coming of salvation in Jesus to the preaching, teaching and mission of the early church to both Jew and Gentile.
The message of Luke and Acts are inseparable despite the separation by the Gospel of John in the canon.
Luke often lays the foundation of issues within Luke and then answers them in Acts.
The dating of Luke’s Gospel must be within the confines of 62C.E.
when the last event in Acts occurs and 170C.E.
when the work is cited by Irenaeus.
The most likely date is in the mid 60sC.E., that is, before the fall of Jerusalem.
Arguments for this date include: (1) the failure to mention either the death of James (62C.E.) or Paul (c late sixties); (2) The picture in Acts that Rome knows little about the Christian movement; (3) the silence about the destruction of Jerusalem; (4) the amount of uncertainty regarding the Jewish – Gentile relations is similar to that in the Pauline epistles which deal with similar issues.
!! Occasion and Purpose
Luke was primarily writing to Theophilus in order that he “/may know the certainty of those things in which you were instructed/” (Luke 1:4).
Luke addresses four major issues as he outlines God’s plan for the Gentiles.
First, how could the Gentiles be included as full members of the kingdom of God even though the promise was to the Abraham and his descendants (Genesis 12:1 -3)?
Second, why were the Jews rejecting the long anticipated promise of God and persecuting those who became Christians?
Luke’s Gospel details how Jesus took the message to Israel and then in Acts we find the Jews forcing the church out of their synagogues and into the ‘church’.
Third, how does the person and teaching of a crucified Christ fit into God’s plan for salvation?
Acts supplies the answers but Luke lays the foundation by presenting the Christology that supports the exaltation.
Lastly, what does it mean to respond to Jesus?
This is the major message as Luke explains the mission of Jesus and how He prepared the disciples for His death and departure.
Luke’s inauguration narrative of Jesus found in Luke 3:1 to 4:44 describes the beginnings of Jesus’ public ministry and is comprised of three events: Firstly, His baptism (3:21-22); secondly, His temptation (4:1-13) and thirdly, His inaugural sermon or ‘hero speech’ in Greek historiographical terms.
As these events unfold Jesus who was to baptise in the Holy Spirit must first be anointed by the Holy Spirit (3:22) and become the “Anointed One” empowered by the Holy Spirit (4:14) prior to the programmatic inaugural address in Luke 4:16-30.
Even though these events are separated by both time and space they form an integrated narrative of the launching of the public ministry of Jesus – the charismatic Christ.
The fact that Luke well knows that Jesus did not really commence His ministry in Nazareth is evident in the passing comment in Luke 4:23 relating to the works performed in Capernaum.
The Nazarene narrative is placed here, then, for its programmatic significance.
Luke is the only account to provide us with the Scriptural text cited together with the account of Jesus’ answers to His critics in the crowd and the resultant reaction.
\\ Exegesis: Luke 4:16-30 – Rejection at Nazareth
The outline of Luke 4:16-30 is as follows:
a) Setting the scene (4:16-17)
b) Cycle 1: Scripture reading and exposition (4:18-21)
c) Cycle 1 Response: Initial questioning (4:22)
d) Cycle 2: A proverb and historical picture of rejection (4:23-27)
e) Cycle 2 Response: The crowd’s anger and hostile desire (4:28-29)
f) Jesus’ departure (4:30)
The outline could also be presented within a chiastic structure as follows:
The synagogue (4:16b)
Receiving the Scripture (4:17a)